People with learning difficulties want to work, love to work and can be a valuable asset to business. At Organic Blooms we know this first hand – our fantastic trainees and employees are enabling our business – a social enterprise – to thrive. Many of them have learning difficulties – but certainly not working difficulties. Each member of our team plays a valuable role at Organic Blooms and makes a vital contribution to the success of the business, whether digging, weeding, propagating, cutting flowers, helping with business planning or supervising colleagues.
With our new #lovetowork campaign we are telling the wider business world about what brilliant employees people with learning difficulties can be, and encouraging employers to provide work experience opportunities. During out first #lovetowork week (9 to 13 May 2016) several of our trainees from Organic Blooms will be out and about on work placements with other local employers – you can follow how they – and employers – get on through our #lovetowork social media.
Learning difficulties are many and varied. Maybe you work with someone with a learning difficulty – dyslexia, Asperger Syndrome, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) – without even knowing it. We all have different strengths but people with learning difficulties often have particular characteristics that could be beneficial to business. Take people with autistic spectrum disorders including Asperger Syndrome. They are usually incredibly focused and methodical, they often like routine tasks that other employees might find tedious and some have specific areas of expertise such as technology or number-related skills. By contrast, many people with Down’s Syndrome are highly empathetic, very positive and great in customer service roles.
Good planning and careful skill-matching are key to getting the best out of employees with learning difficulties – but then that should be no different from getting the best out of any of us!
Download our pack to find out more, and remember to follow #lovetowork on social media.
Update: Our first Love to Work Week in May 2016 was a roaring success – we’ll be bringing you more from our Love to Work campaign in future. In the meantime, our employers’ pack explains what Love to Work Week was all about.